Jiri Prochazka has spoken.
The now-former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Light Heavyweight titleholder vacated his crown today (Weds., Nov. 23, 2022) after news broke that he’d suffered a severe shoulder injury. Prochazka was set to attempt his first title defense at UFC 282 on Dec. 10, 2022, against Glover Teixeira, but now the vacant title will be on the line in the new main event, featuring Jan Blachowicz and Magomed Ankalaev.
Prochazka commented on how everything has shaken out shortly after the change-ups.
“I am very disappointed to announce that I will not be defending my belt at @ufc 282,” Prochazka said on Instagram. “I was injured in training in Las Vegas while finishing my preparation for my title defense in the UFC’s Light Heavyweight division. I injured my shoulder and surgery is required which will put me out of action for at least 6 months. Knowing this information, I have decided, after consulting with UFC management, that due to this time constraint, I will not hold Light Heavyweight division and will vacate the title. I will go for the UFC belt as soon as the doctors give me the green light to fight. I’m going to go for the belt and I’m going to get it no matter who currently holds it. It’s always been the most important thing for me to put on the best performance and compare myself to the best. Let the best show no matter who’s there now. I’ll be back in six months and I’ll take the title whoever holds it. I apologize to my fans, friends, family who bought tickets and made plans to come to Las Vegas to support me, it means a lot to me. I also want to apologize to Glover. Victory!”
Prochazka (29-3-1) has been flawless as a competitor since Dec. 2015, winning 13 straight with RIZIN and UFC titles accumulated along the way. This past June 2022, Prochazka defeated the aforementioned Teixeira for his biggest accomplishment yet at UFC 275. Needing the 25th minute of their encounter, “Denisa” forced his Brazilian foe to tap with a come-from-behind rear-naked choke in an instant classic (watch highlights).